Overwatch

Zedd calls out Overwatch devs for removing six heroes from rotation

Published: 27/Mar/2020 16:41

by Michael Gwilliam

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Russian-German DJ Anton Zaslavski, better known as Zedd, called out Blizzard Entertainment after seeing that the week’s hero pools for March 26 banned four DPS heroes and six characters overall.

This is the fourth week of hero pools with the first three banning only four heroes each. In the first week, two DPS heroes were banned. For the second, Blizzard removed two supports from rotation. And in the third, two tanks were unavailable. Now, the ante has been upped considerably.

Zedd, who is a Grand Master-ranked Overwatch player and even performed at the 2019 OWL Grand Finals, took to Twitter to voice his concerns: “Blizzard straight up trolling [with] these hero bans,” adding a laughing emoji.

Blizzard Entertainment
All six heroes counter Pharah in some capacity.

The Widowmaker specialist continued in the replies: “IMO: if you have to remove 6(!) heroes just to make 1 hero more viable – it means your balance is simply off.”

The viable hero the DJ was referring to is likely Pharah. All of the heroes banned either hard or soft counter Pharah players firing rockets from the sky, with their hitscan weapons or incredible vertical mobility.

“Not to mention that I don’t even think removing those 6 heroes will accomplish the goal [to be honest],” he added, suggesting that the week’s meta won’t be as friendly to Pharah players as some would assume.

While Zedd was clearly against this week’s pools, Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan did state that the first five weeks would be quite experimental.

“For the first 5 weeks, we will be trying a range to see what feel right. We’ve architected this system so that we can update the hero pools without the need to patch,” he said in a forum post back in January.

“So we’ll be monitoring feedback very closely, experimenting a bit with the pool and adapting our strategy as time goes on.”

Blizzard Entertainment
Pharah may be more viable as her counters are out of rotation.

With such a prominent voice speaking out, one has to wonder if Blizzard will respond to the 30-year-old performer.

That said, considering there’s still one week of this experimental period remaining, it will be interesting to see what the company has in store for pools in the future and what format they settle on.

Overwatch

Overwatch player discovers secret counter to Mei’s Cryo-Freeze

Published: 1/Dec/2020 19:32

by Michael Gwilliam

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Mei’s Cryo-Freeze has to be one of the most annoying abilities in Overwatch, granting the hero complete invincibility for its duration. Now, a player has discovered a brilliant trick to counter the ice-themed hero.

In Overwatch, there are few abilities as unique as Cryo-Freeze. It places Mei inside of an ice cube that heals her and cleanses any status effects such as Ana’s biotic grenade.

However, the most annoying thing about the ability is how it makes Mei completely invulnerable. For the few seconds she has it activated, she can survive anything from point-blank D.Va bombs to Sigma’s Gravitic Flux.

Some players have found ways to “time” abilities so they connect with Mei as she exits her ice cube cocoon, such as Tracer’s Pulse Bomb or a Reinhardt charge. However, this tactic is reliant on the Mei using Cryo-Freeze’s whole duration. If she cancels it early, then there’s a chance that she’ll end up surviving or dodging the oncoming attack.

Mei uses ice block in Overwatch
Blizzard Entertainment
Mei’s ice block is extremely powerful.

Luckily, a new technique has been discovered which should make countering Mei a breeze. As shown by Reddit user bleubey, Junkrat can actually place his trap directly on top of Mei’s ice cube.

This trick should guarantee that the Chinese environmentalist hero gets trapped and is extremely vulnerable to any attacks. With any luck, you can even catch the Mei player completely off-guard and force out her ultimate.

That exact thing happened in bleubey’s clip. After coming out of the cube, the Mei found herself trapped and ended up wasting her Blizzard in the process, only to be taken out of the picture by a damage-boosted Junkrat grenade.

I find it amusing that you can put a junk trap on top of Mei’s head while she’s an ice cube from Overwatch

Users on the site were shocked to see that such a trick even existed. “I’m almost gold border and I never knew this,” wrote marioaprooves.

“I’m GM and I never knew this sh*t. Holy f**k,” stated another, clearly shocked at what they had witnessed.

Mei freezes Roadhog
Blizzard Entertainment
Mei has a lot of tricks up her sleeve.

Bleubey responded in turn that they only found out by complete accident, proving that such a tactic really went under the radar for a long time.

The next time there is a Mei giving your team trouble, try swapping to Junkrat and taking her out with this neat trap hat maneuver.